Bernard van Dieren is one of those composers whose name is better known than his music. During his lifetime he was regarded as a somewhat mysterious figure. His music was praised by Walton and Warlock, by Busoni and Schoenberg, and yet today his works are scarcely ever heard. Bernard Hélène Joseph van Dieren was born and educated in Rotterdam. In company with a fellow musician from Rotterdam, Frida Kindler (1879-1964) he moved to London in 1909 and they married on New Year’s Day 1910. Frida was a superb pianist, a pupil of Busoni; and the Italian master in turn was to have a profound influence on the young Bernard. His style changed rapidly from the conventional late Romantic to the Atonal, as epitomised by the songs of 1907-8 and the pianoSketchesof 1910-1911, the latter being an idiom close to Busoni’sSonatina Seconda. In 1912 he began to suffer from a progressive and incurable infection of the kidneys, involving recurrent attacks of renal stone, so painful as to require morphia for their relief. Coincidentally, his musical style became much less radical, and more tonally based, though the writing was still largely polyphonic. Van Dieren’s younger English friends, including Warlock, Cecil Gray, the Sitwells and Epstein helped to promote his music. In the 1920’s and 1930’s many of the smaller pieces were published and some of the larger works were performed in the composer’s last years, and just after his death by the BBC, under the direction of Edward Clark and Constant Lambert. With the onset of World War II and the early deaths of a number of his active disciples (Gray and Lambert in 1951: baritone John Goss in 1953) his music slipped out of the performing repertoire. By the 1960’s his work had sunk into that oblivion from which it isonly now emerging.
The Concert at London Prince Consort Road with Bach Double
Bernard Van Dieren and Eiluned Davies deserve a place in the classical music roster for the important contribution to music: the two composers have had little recognition during their lifes in spite of their valuable musicianship.
Musician-Violinist has conducted a series of research on 900' and Modern Copmposers. She entered in contact with the British Pianist-Composer Eiluned Davies in 1995 through the friendship with Pianist Olga Wilson who was also her colleague at the London-Watford School of Music. In 1996 Olga Wilson promoted a series of Commemoration Concerts for the 60° Anniversary of Bernard Van Dieren's death. On these occasion they performed music by Van Dieren and Davies one of which took place at Waltford School of Music Hall.Pupil of Concert Violinists Beatrice Antonioni and Tibor Varga, whilst in UK Angela Amato studied with Yfrah Neaman and Emanuel Hurwitz and was a member of the London Orchestras and was active as Quartet and Orchestra Leader and as a Solist.